victoria viewMyanmar, a tropical country in Continental South East Asia, lies between latitudes 9° 58' to 28° 29' North and longitudes 92° 10' to 101° 10' East. The country has a total land area of 676,577 km2. The country's length from south to north is about 2,090 km and the maximum width from west to east is about 805 km. The country has four important river systems, flowing in the north-southerly direction, of which the Ayeyarwaddy River, the main waterway, is navigable for about 1,450 km.

Myanmar is regarded as a land of diverse culture, traditions and natural resources. It is endowed with one of the largest forest covers in the region. More than half of the country is still covered with forests, which are well managed under the Myanma Selection System (MSS).

Forest resources play a dominant role in improving the socio-economic life of the people of the nation. The country is the world's prime supplier of natural teak (Tectona grandis), which is one of the pillars of the State's economy. About 75% of the total population of 49 million live in rural areas, depending upon forest resources. The forestry sector provides goods and services for domestic consumption as well as export markets.

The forestry sector constituted around l % of the national GDP annually over the last decade. Export earnings made by the forestry sector constituted about 30% of the country's total in the early l990s, followed by decreasing shares in total export earnings in the subsequent years due to increases in other sectors. But, it has increased considerably in 98-99 and 99-2000. Growth rate of GDP of the forestry sector is about 2.7% of the total national GDP in 96-97, 1.3% in 97-98, 1% in 9899 and 0.9% in 99-2000. The role of forests for environmental stability and for soil and water conservation is increasingly recognized by the State. The protected areas system is well established with the set-up of parks and sanctuaries. Myanmar is committed to sustainable development of forests and biological resources through accession to a number of international conventions and agreements. In effect, forestry in Myanmar has been well in place, maintaining a balance between environment, development and social needs.

Protected Areas System (PAS)

eco tourism2Diverse forest ecosystems in Myanmar are home to nearly 300 known mammal species, 360 reptiles and about 1,000 bird species. Myanmar is also endowed with about 7,000 plant species. Myanmar is found to have more than 1,200 species of butterfly, of which six are identified as rare species even at the global level. So far, 23 sanctuaries and five parks, constituting about 2.26% (15,270 km2) of the total land area of the country have been established under the existing PAS, and proposals for forming new protected areas have also been made. It is stipulated in Myanmar Forest Policy, 1995 that the coverage of the PAS will be increased to 5% in the short term. In the long term it is intended to increase up to 10%.

pyinoolwin botanical gardenThe natural forests of Myanmar provide substantial opportunities for ecotourism development. The MeinmahlaKyun Wildlife Sanctuary in the Ayeyarwaddy Delta, the Hlawga Park near Yangon, the Yangon Zoological Gardens, the Moeyungyi Wet- lands Wildlife Sanctuary near Bago, the Seinyay Forest Resort| on the strategic road across Bago Yoma teak forests, the Popa Mountain Park and the Shwe-set-taw Wildlife Sanctuary in the Central Myanmar. The Pyin-Oo-lwin Botanical Gardens, the Alaungtaw Kathapa National Park in Upper Myanmar and the Inle Lake Wetlands Wildlife Sanctuary on the Shan Plateau of Eastern Myanmar are among those with outstanding ecotourism potential.

nature-observation-01The Inn-Daw Gyi Wetlands Wildlife Sanctuary in northern Myanmar and the Natmataung (Mt. Victoria) National Park on the north-west Chin Hills are also of high potential for ecotourism and are now being developed. The Chatthin Wildlife Sanctuary in Upper Myanmar is also the protected area where development activities for ecotourism are being made. Moreover, the Khakarborazi National I Park in the far north constitutes an attractive environment with snow-capped mountains and sub-alpine forests and opportunities for mountaineering and outdoor recreation. Most striking upgrading have recently been made at Pyin-Oo-Lwin Botanical Gardens, Popa Mountain Park and Moeyungyi Wetlands Wildlife Sanctuary, to promote ecotourism, public recreation, education and research.

Pho Kyar Forest Resort

eco phokyarPho Kyar Forest Resort is located in a foot-hill of Bago Yoma Mountain ranges and lies within the Saing Ya tropical reserved forest. 10 miles away from the town of Thargaya, which is a town on Yangon to Mandalay main motor-road and 204 miles from Yangon and 240 miles from Mandalay.

The Resort is emerged as the ideal eco-tourism spot has been having a special privilege of occupying a prime location. The camp is surrounded by a stream running in zigzag way within the area and fragrance of wild orchids, plants and trees in seasonal flowers. And also sound of birds will get into fascinating atmosphere. The Stream supplies an abundance of water for local residents and provides a bathing place for elephants.

There is a opportunity to visit elephant village where you can learn and see the Mahaut (elephant driver) communicate with their respective elephants how instinctive and natural inborn tendency between elephants and human being.

The resort has seven bungalows comprising 14 standard double rooms equipped with hot and cool water, electrical supply, 24 hours room service, restaurants, laundry service, traditional massage on request, cafeteria and bar.